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When we are travelling, there is nothing we enjoy more than eating local food, learning about the local traditions, and spending hours at the local markets hunting for treasures. Discover all the inspiration that is behind Cuckoo B, our Stories and exclusive collections.

Symbols in Japanese Culture

Cuckoo B navigates local cultures in order to capture its essence. In order to understand Japanese culture it is essential to throw a look back and understand how the Japanese culture and vision has been chiseled for centuries. We want to share with you some of those keys that will serve as a compass to get into Japanese culture. Without this, it is impossible to understand the idiosyncrasy of a country as complex and exciting as Japan.

 

THE ORCHIDS

Olivia Earrings

The orchid is considered a very prestigious flower worldwide. Its beauty and different varieties, have turned the orchid into a symbol of the exaltation of the romanticism. When a man gives an orchid, he gives his heart. For this reason orchids have been portrayed in verses and sonnets, in films and plays.

Chinese and Japanese cultures had worshiped the orchid for centuries. Nowadays, Japan is considered the land of specialists in the cultivation of orchids.

Let’s take a look at its origins. The first references about the existence of this plant, goes back to Ancient Greece. In the 6th century BC the philosopher Theophrastus wrote a treatise on botany. In this treatise, the Greek refers to a plant that caught their attention because it had two tubers together, which represented the idea of ​​a man's “manhood’ Hence its name: orchis which means "testicle". As a curious note, Charles Darwin, in his studies on the evolution of the species, makes a very particular reference about the orchid: "The varied stratagems that the orchids use to attract their pollinators transcends the imagination of any human being"

Our Olivia Earrings are a delicate accessory meant to be worn for a special occasion, just as special as an orchid.

 

THE LIONS

Raion Ring

The Fu Lions, also Buddha Lions, Chinese Lions or Korean Lions (and also erroneously known as Fu Dogs since they are not dogs) and sometimes also called Shishi literally ("stone lion"), are powerful mythical animals that have their origin in the Buddhist tradition. Consequently, are quite widespread in Southeast Asia, China and Japan.

It seems that Fu's dogs are, really, lions, since the lion is an animal consecrated to Buddha. Indeed: these beings do not appear in primitive oriental art, but were introduced late, with Buddhism, as defenders of the law and protectors of sacred buildings. Another proof of this is that sometimes Buddha is represented on the back of these animals.

These animals are also known as "dogs of happiness" or "celestial dogs" and are emblems of courage and energy, indispensable complements of wisdom.

The symbolism of the lions of Fu is also considered in the studies on Feng Shui associated with vigilance, fair play and the defense of the weak.

These are called Komainu, and they are believed to be guardians of the temple. In Japanese culture lions are popular symbols of protection.

Our Raion Ring is inspired by the lions that guard the shrines since they are always protected by 2 majestic lions. This ring is a symbol of safety and protection.

 

THE SNAKES

Amaya Bag Snakes

Most of the time, when people think about Japanese mythology, they might think of snakes because they are so closely related with the Japanese myths in general. People believe that women and snakes are closely related to each other. There are really two different types of snake women: ones that are evil and ones that are good. A very popular myth tells the story of a palace under the sea at the very depth. A snake woman lives there who is believed to be the daughter of the sea god. Any man who goes down and meets her there she marries, taking good care of them. When the man has to return to his world she gives him special powers or wealth.

Snakes in Japan, and in different cultures, are associated with the waters, the sea and the rivers, with women, and the duality of good and evil.

Our Amaya Bag Snakes is created for all those women who inspire myths and make history.

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